Press Democrat wine writer Peg Melnik scopes out restaurant wine lists around the North Bay, looking for good value and the occasional splurge. This week’s picks (prices are retail; restaurant markup varies):
Boulder Bank, 2014 Fitzroy, Marlborough, 13.5 percent alcohol, $14. A racy sauvignon blanc with crisp acidity and zesty aromas and flavors. Notes of grapefruit, lime, mineral and a hint of jalapeño. This is New Zealand sauvignon blanc at its best. Striking. It was recently seen on the wine list at Pacific Catch at Town Center in Corte Madera.
Crux, 2014 GSM Rosé, 13.9 percent, $22. Dry, with wild strawberry tangy fruit, just the right dose of mineral and crisp acidity. Out of the park. This has recently been seen on the wine list at Pullman Kitchen in Santa Rosa.
Cade, 2014 Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc, 14.2 percent, $30. A sauvignon blanc with lovely notes of grapefruit, Meyer lemon and mineral. Extremely well-crafted. The fruit to acid balance is perfect. Lingering finish. Knockout. The wine was recently seen on the wine list at Farm restaurant in Napa.
La Crema, 2013 Russian River Valley Chardonnay, 14.5 percent, $30. This is a chardonnay-lover’s chardonnay. Gorgeous notes of stone fruit, honeysuckle and butterscotch. Seamless texture. Decidedly decadent, but maintains its balance. Lovely. This chardonnay was recently seen on the wine list at Seafood Brasserie at the Hyatt Vineyard Creek hotel in Santa Rosa.
Iron Horse Vineyards, 2010 Ocean Reserve Blanc de Blancs, 13.5 percent, $50. This sparkler is complex, with a range of flavors – tangerine, mineral and lime. It has crisp acidity and a lovely mousse. Top rate. This bubbly has recently been seen on the wine list at Valette in Healdsburg.
Want to share a current wine on your favorite restaurant’s list? Email firstname.lastname@example.org or check out her Tasting Room blog at pressdemocrat.com.